I didn’t mean to slight the folks in northwestern Oklahoma with my column Sunday on my five favorite outdoor destinations in the state.
Hey, I was raised in eastern Oklahoma, so I am partial to green, rolling hills and muddy waters.
U.S. District Judge Tim Leonard in Oklahoma City, who was raised in Beaver, noticed that I didn’t include anywhere in the Panhandle among my five favorite places.
He mentioned this in open court Monday during my “voir dire” examintion to determine if I could be a competent juror. I think that was a strike against me.
The judge wasn’t the only one who noticed the omission. Donny Carter, who doesn’t even live in the Panhandle, also e-mailed me to brag about the western Oklahoma landscape.
The Stratford resident said he couldn’t argue with my five choices, but that the Black Mesa should be added to the list.
“That’s some of the most interesting country I’ve seen,” Carter said, noting that the mule deer out there are some of the largest deer he’s ever seen.
On a camping trip several years ago at Black Mesa State Park, Carter also said he saw a small mountain lion.
I’ve never spent much time at the Black Mesa except during quick detours on trips to and from Colorado, but it is interesting country.
Black Mesa State Park is Oklahoma’s highest point. The park got it’s name from the layer of black lava rock that coated the mesa about 30 million years ago.
The Nature Preserve is 15 miles from the state park and is Oklahoma’s highest elevation at 4,973 feet above sea level.
I threw myself on the mercy of the court and told the judge that if I had compiled a top six list, it would have included the Black Mesa.
Never break a promise to a person who makes a living by sending people to prison. So my five favorite outdoor destinations in Oklahoma are now my six sensational outdoor destinations. Make Black Mesa No. 6.